So you want to travel the world. You’ve binged watched too many of Anthony Bourdain’s Places Unknown and decide, “ What the hell! Why not!” . You too want a taste of authentic Mexican street tacos, emerge yourself in the crazy and thrilling running of the bulls in Pamplona…the list can go on and on. But hold on world traveler, before you pick up the passport, drive to the airport and set off to the unknown on your version of , Around the World in 80 days, there’s a few things you ought to know.

Safety. Yes, the most important thing, yet for some, when the wanderlust hits, might be one of the things you might roll your eyes on. Yes, sometimes it’s not the best to talk to strangers. Oh and don’t think just because you’re in a “first world country, nothing can happen to me…” you might want to back up and re-evaluate your logic. Look, better be safe than sorry. A few things to keep in my will keep yourself safe, friends and family at ease and best of all time to actually enjoy that trip! So keep scrolling for some solo travel safety tips:

1.Pack Light—The less luggage you have around the less likely and less vulnerable you are to theft. If you worst comes to worst and its between your safety, give up that phone, cash or whatever it may be. Your safety comes first.

2. Arrive in the day— Most crimes happen by night. Daylight hours are best, you can see your surroundings and there will be enough people walking around you don’t feel alone.

3. Transportation—Use official taxis. Check the outside of the taxi for official logos. Often the driver will be able to show you their badge. No brainer, but make sure the photo matches the driver. It may be tempting and cheaper to use a “pirate taxi”, but when you’re alone and in a location you’ve never been, and you don’t want it to be your last, take the official taxi.

4. Room check— Check the windows and the doors. Check everything locks properly. If you want to be extra cautious, buy a travel door lock.

5. Learn language basics—Not only is it respectful but you will be less of a target if you can learn some key phrases.

6. Avoid bad places—Don’t wait to learn what are the places you should avoid. Do your research, join travel boards, or ask friend and family on their experience. Be weary of any poor lit areas or alleyways.

7. Watch your alcohol consumption—If you drink, drink responsibly.

Young woman enjoying a drink in a pub or restaurant sitting at a table alone outdoors illuminated by electric lamps sipping a drink

8. Make eye contact—Be confident. Make every effort possible to not show you are not afraid if you find yourself in a less perfect situation.

9. Don’t wear flashy things—Leaves the jewels at home.

10. Keep a hand of your goods bag/purse— Some may think this is unnecessary travel tip, but people have gotten very good at stealing phones, wallets by tearing a hole or slipping their hands into open bags, especially crowded places like subways

Woman using pad outdoor at sunset

11. Protect your valuables—Consider purchasing some travel locks and keys for your personal belongings. You might also consider a chain for thing like your backpack or laptop in case you ever decide to take any overnight transportation like a train. But never leave any important belonging likes your phone or laptop unattended.

12. Copy important documents—Keep at least 1-2 copies of important documents, itineraries, passport, visas. Make sure your family has a copy just in case.

13. Make sure you know where you are— Learn to location where the nearest hospital, bank, post office , groceries stores are. Be sure to let you your friends any family know your travel plans as well.

14. Purchase travel insurance—You never know what could happen, whether an unexpected natural disaster, bad food poisoning or in extreme cases, war or terrorist at. There are many travel insurances that offer protection for cases such as this.

15. Use your intuition— Trust that gut feeling! Nine times out of ten theres a reason you have that feeling something if not going right. Trust yourself!

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